Posted by lisamarie
on 21 Apr 2016
Hello, my husband has been offered a job in China. We have been given the option of Shanghai or Beijing. We currently live in a very rural part of the UK. I myself am not very well traveled and will intend to travel back home to the UK several times during the year as I'll get home sick! We have a 4 year old and 1 year old. I intend to be an at home mum so won't need any schooling, although I may look into the children learning the language when we are settled. I will be treating this an as an adventure so will want to plan several things during the week, be it mother and children group meetings, activities, attractions for children, etc. Firstly, which city would be better suited to us? Secondly, which parts of the city offer the best British community for support and friendship? Thanks hugely.
Anonymous (not verified) on 3 May 2016
Thank you both. Yes we've done some research and are set on Shanghai. We are looking to visit as a family later this month. We need to set up appointments with nurseries (for ages 1-4 years old), look at apartments, etc. Can anyone suggest an area near Shanghai? Being from a rural part of Wales / England, I'd prefer a more community feel, some green space. I've seen that a good place for ex-pats is a compound where the apartments tend to have a club house, play ground - a type of place where we can get to know other families. If anyone can point me in the right direction that would be great. Thank you.
Cayley on 25 Apr 2016
Hi lisamarie,

Both cities have a lot to offer, and both will have large expat communities for you to befriend.

Read more about the cosmopolitan city of Shanghai and the bustling Beijing to help you decide which city sounds more appealing and appropriate for your family.

Maybe think about issues such as access to outdoor activities and excursions, what type of weather you'd prefer, and what type of cultural activities you are interested in.
Anonymous (not verified) on 30 Apr 2016
While both Cities have a lot to offer, I believe you will be more comfortable with Shanghai. It is a beautiful city with both new and old sites that you and your children will enjoy, with less smog than Beijing. It also has some very noticeable European influence, with the places like the French Concession. In my opinion, Shanghai is an excellent place to experience Chinese culture at its fullest while still having little bits and pieces of "home" with you.